Entrance to Sera Monastery

Entrance to Sera Monastery

1998.286.172.1 (Glass negative)

Image for comparison


Raw Image


(Lantern Slide)

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Key Information


Lt Col R. S. Kennedy? Willougby Patrick Rosemeyer?


Sir Charles Bell

Date of Photo

1920-1921 or 1922?


Lhasa Area > Sera

Accession number


Image Dimensions

78 x 103 mm

The Shengo at the entrance of the Sera Monastery, holding iron rods of office: four monks standing under a gateway, with a Tibetan man behind. The two central figures hold rods of office. Behind the group can be seen parts of the building of Sera Monastery. The original image is held flat against a piece of white board with large headed round pins

Further Information

Photographic Process

Negative Quarter Plate , Copy Negative

Date Acquired

Donated 1983

Donated by

St Antony's College, Oxford

Copy difference

Copy Neg Lantern


Sir Charles Bell's Mission to Lhasa 1920-21

Revised Photographer


Previous Catologue Number


Previous Pitt Rivers Museum Number


Related Collections

British Library, Oriental and India Office Collections

Manual Catalogues -

Manual Catalogues - Bell's List of Illustrations entry: "[No. of chapter] XXXII [Subject of Chapter] The Religion [Subject of Illustration] Q280-157. The Shal-ngos at entrance of the Sera Monastery, with iron rods of office. [Where placed - book page[ G.J. [Remarks] L.171"

Other Information - Photographer: Because of the nature of re-photography that has taken place, the original image may have been taken by W. P. Rosemeyer during his trip to Lhasa in 1922 to extend the telegraph line and later forwarded to Bell (possibly via David Macdonald). Alternatively, this technique of re-photographing the print may simply have been a device that Bell used for making contact exposure lantern slides. However, the fact that the original print was made using a Postcard-sized negative suggests that this original photograph was not taken by Bell. Alternatively, it may have been taken by Lt Col Robert Kennedy, the Medical Officer on Bell's mission, who also used Postcard-sized negatives [MS 17/8/2004]

Contemporary Publication -

Contemporary Publication - Published in 'A Year in Lhasa' in The Geographical Journal, February,1924, facing p.96:"The Two Shengnos with Iron Rods of Office". This piece was derived from a lecture given to the Royal Geographical Society in London on 3rd December 1923 [MS 10/9/2004]

Contemporary Publication -

Contemporary Publication - Published in 'The Religion of Tibet', Bell, C. A., Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1931, facing p.170 (bottom):" 'Two powerfully-built monks."

For Citation use:
The Tibet Album. "Entrance to Sera Monastery" 05 Dec. 2006. The Pitt Rivers Museum. <http://tibet.prm.ox.ac.uk/photo_1998.286.172.1.html>.

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